I am soaking lentils and need to know how much baking soda to add per cup of lentils.

Previously, I had to cook lentils for about 2 and 1/2 hours to get the desired softness of the lentils. It was suggested to add baking soda to the water while soaking lentils. How much baking soda should I use?

  • related: cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/49436/…
    – Jolenealaska
    Commented Sep 15, 2017 at 22:52
  • 1
    I have used much less (more like 1/8 teaspoon for 2 liters/quarts), to some small benefit, but a teaspoon per liter/quart (see the answer to above concerning chickpeas) seems more in line with references I can find online. Be aware that baking soda does have an unpleasant flavor if you use enough to actually taste, so I recommend starting conservatively.
    – Jolenealaska
    Commented Sep 15, 2017 at 22:58
  • 4
    Also: "Older bean recipes often included a pinch of baking soda for its alkalinity, but because baking soda has been shown to destroy valuable nutrients, few contemporary recipes suggest this shortcut" Christopher Kimble, ATK
    – Jolenealaska
    Commented Sep 15, 2017 at 23:06
  • IMO, if you want soft, just make split lentils in the first place. Red lentils are usually sold this way.
    – Ian
    Commented Sep 19, 2017 at 15:46
  • As there are many types of lentils, and many recipes, you might want to tell us what sort, and what you're making with them (not that baking soda is necessary for any lentils I've come across)
    – Chris H
    Commented Nov 18, 2017 at 16:54

1 Answer 1


None. I have recently discovered that lentils do not require to be soaked prior cooking - and nor baking soda. I have already detailed this in an answer but I am not sure how to find it and link to it. I try and I will edit this.

Another point is that the producers recipes were all clear about this : they recommend a minimal amount of salt in the cooking water, the rest to be added /adjusted afterwards. If there is an unwanted effect related to sodium, it might apply to baking soda as well.

  • Are you looking for this post of yours?
    – Stephie
    Commented Dec 18, 2017 at 18:52
  • @Stephie. Yes. Thank you. How to search for older post ? May be on the web version?
    – Alchimista
    Commented Dec 18, 2017 at 19:01
  • Hop over to Seasoned Advice Chat, I'll show you both ways.
    – Stephie
    Commented Dec 18, 2017 at 19:03
  • I am on app :)) and still relatively new
    – Alchimista
    Commented Dec 18, 2017 at 19:04
  • It works on the App as well, but chat is easier to explain than via comments. Try clicking on the link in my previous comment. This shoud bring you straight to the chat that belongs to this site.
    – Stephie
    Commented Dec 18, 2017 at 19:06

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